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A Policy Perspective Aligning indicators to strategies and targets. Dr Sarah Webster Head of UK Biodiversity Policy Unit. U K has a range of commitments…. Biodiversity policy has multiple objectives at multiple scales:

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a policy perspective aligning indicators to strategies and targets

A Policy PerspectiveAligning indicators to strategies and targets

Dr Sarah Webster

Head of UK Biodiversity Policy Unit

u k has a range of commitments
UK has a range of commitments…
  • Biodiversity policy has multiple objectives at multiple scales:
    • International; Convention on Biological Diversity’s Strategic Plan for Biodiversity and the Aichi targets
    • European: EU Biodiversity Strategy
    • National: UK Biodiversity Framework and Country Strategies
    • Local: For various local initiatives
    • All of which contribute towards our aim to Halt the Loss of Biodiversity by 2020
at a range of scales
At a range of scales…
  • … Indicators contribute to reporting against these targets
indicators are useful because
Indicators are useful because…
  • They are a communication tool:
    • To summarise complex information
    • To be accessible to non-specialists
    • Part of the evidence to show progress towards targets at varying scales
    • They are/should be:
    • Outcome focused
    • Easy to understand
    • Robust, reliable, relevant
reporting at the international scale
Reporting at the international scale…
  • 5th National Report to CBD submitted in April 2014
  • An important source of information for a mid-term review of progress towards 2020 targets
  • Parties were encouraged to emphasize the use of indicators in their reports
how indicators helped
How indicators helped…
  • 25 UK Indicators have been mapped to the 5 Strategic Goals of the CBD
  • Enabled more streamlined reporting
a country s trategy example
A country strategy example…
  • Country strategies translate CBD agreement and commitment into country level action
  • Biodiversity 2020 is the strategy for England’s wildlife and ecosystem services
  • Included commitment to “develop and publish a set of indicators to assess delivery of the strategy”
england level indicators are
England level indicators are…
    • Limited in number so that they are easily understood
    • Easy to use
    • Cost effective
    • Outcome focussed
  • Aligned with UK, European and Global Frameworks – so we can ‘scale-up’ reporting
an example of local use
An example of local use…
  • In England we have 12 government funded Nature Improvement Areas
  • We have a framework of core, optional and local indicators
  • Provides both national picture and bottom-up
using indicators for reporting
Using indicators for reporting…
  • Proxies may be needed if direct measures are unavailable
  • Relatively simple indicators are easier to communicate and have more impact
  • Proliferation of indicators is not helpful
  • To reflect on policy intervention we need to report over a relatively short time period
we need three key things
We need three key things…
  • Confidence in the indicator – that it is robust, reliable and accurate
  • We need to understand what an indicator is telling us – and what a suite of indicators together tells us
  • Ideally we need to understand causality
a final word
A final word…
  • To date, a headline suite of indicators, easily understood and communicated to all, has proved to be a robust model and the most effective solution for communicating such a difficult subject to such a wide audience.
  • The UK approach to biodiversity indicators has been well received internationally and has helped to place the UK at the forefront of international work on this subject.
  • We should be proud of what we have already achieved as we look forwards!
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Thank you

sarah.webster@defra.gsi.gov.uk